Charleston Area Alliance board continues search for next CEO with retaining search firm

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Board of Directors of the Charleston Area Alliance has begun the search for the alliance’s next president & chief executive officer and it’s occurring in the uncertain COVID-19 world.

Board member Matt Bond of United Bank, who will head a 9-member search committee to work with the executive search firm Waverly Partners, said the pandemic has thrown a few obstacles into the search but he remains confident in finding the best candidate for the job.

He said Waverly will identify qualified local, regional and national candidates.

Matthew Bond

“Waverly’s role is to help us build as a diverse candidate pool. Make sure that we are turning every rock and making sure we find all of the qualified applicants,” Bond told 580-WCHS in Charleston.

Steve Rubin, former Board Chair of the Alliance, began serving as Interim CEO last fall. Rubin’s appointment filled the vacancy when former CEO Matt Ballard resigned to accept the CEO/Executive Director role at the West Virginia Regional Technology Park.

Bond said they would like to have someone in the position by late spring, early summer but there’s no hard deadline with the pandemic. He said Rubin has been a gracious fill-in during the uncertain times.

Bond said there is not a hard number on finalists when cutting down the pool, although five might be a target. The process in bringing in candidates for interviews remains up in the air because of the pandemic.

Bond explained that having knowledge of the area would be a plus but it’s not the only factor. He said the committee is looking for someone with leadership qualities and experience in the economic development space. Bond said the next CEO must have a collaborative mindset and a team-building approach.

“We think that we have a very unique position in that it’s an economic development organization in the state’s capital. We want someone that can work with other organizations and can leverage all of the various resources that we have,” Bond said.

For more information about the search, contact search consultants Eric Peterson and Harrison Turnbull at [email protected]; all inquiries will be held in confidence.

The Charleston Area Alliance attracts and retains innovative industries and workforce, revitalizes urban spaces and improves Charleston, West Virginia and the Kanawha Valley through a unified mission and strategic goals.